Mercury Retrograde: Let's Take Some Time and Figure It Out


Since another Mercury retrograde is nearly upon us, I got to thinking that it would be a good idea to dedicate a blog post defining what Merc retro really means, as I imagine that if you're a bit out of the astro loop, hearing people (namely astrologers) talk about it can be kind of confusing.

About 3-4 times a year, Mercury--the planet that has rulership over communication and correspondence in astrology--goes "backwards" or retrograde for three weeks at a time. Now because of Mercury's correlation with writing, reading, speaking, thinking, travel (and vehicles), we'll find that doing these kinds of things during a retrograde period gets trickier and more difficult to do than in a non-retro period. It's during these times where:

  •  Messages or words are more likely to be misconstrued or taken out of context
  •  Emails, letters, text messages, etc. either get lost or disappear entirely
  •  Event and travel plans hit all kinds of delays or get cancelled
  • Machines like computers, cell phones, or cars break down and need repair or replacement
  • Contracts or agreements get broken or renegotiated, people go back on their word
  • People from our past (like ex lovers) seemingly pop up out of the blue

Okay, so now that we have a sense about what happens during a Mercury retrograde, let's discuss why...

We live in a world of movement and as such, time slows down for no one.  With all of this constant forward momentum, it can be tough sometimes to determine if the direction that we're moving in is the best one. This is where retrogrades come in. They act a little like time machines, helping us to go back and see where we've might have missed important information necessary for our progress and evolution. The goal is then to use the clues we've discovered to inform our future decision making process.

And since astrology is a system based on a the interpretation of symbols, I find that keywords help to drive home a point that a planet is "making." So, for Merc retro here's a list of keywords to consider to help keep frustration levels to a minimum:

Rest. Review. Repeat. Rethink. Re-plan. Renegotiate. Revisit. Repair. Reserve. Research. Re-read. Rewrite. Relaunch. Restructure. Remember. Reflect.

One last note: as you've probably figured out by now, Merc retro is not the time for beginning anything (or buying a gadget) that is brand spanking new. If anything new is started under the retrograde, we'll often be sorry about it later and feeling like we need to change our mind. If possible, wait for after the retrograde period  to act on any major idea or endeavor when clear thinking is better favored. Get it? Got it? Good.